Posted by: Dawud Israel | March 6, 2009

Lotas, Toilets and Muslims

One way to see the progress of a group of people is to study how they approach the more intimate moments- for example how they go the bathroom.

Walk into a public toilet here in Canada and you encounter the following:

1) Whoever came before you didn’t flush nor did they keep the toilet seat clean

2) Graffiti fills the toilet stall…cussing, debates on God and people’s phone numbers for a good time.

3) The toilet paper breaks easily when you try to pull out some of it, as if they toilet paper makers purposefully are trying to make this more miserable.

4) You realize you need a lota or waterjug but hey, should you buy the Coca-Cola bottle? What about boycotting them because of their support of certain oppressive regimes? Oh man, what about my refills! You don’t want non-Muslims wanting to know about your lota do you!?

5) Oh shoot, you have your bag with you and in it is the Quran. But you really, really gotta go! And you don’t want anyone stealing it.
(There is a hadith to the effect when Rasulullah salallahu alayhi wasalam would enter the bathroom forgetting to remove his ring that said, “Muhammad Rasul Allah” he would simply put it in his hand and close it, so that it wasn’t apparent. So one could just hide it in their bag?

Well, as you can see, it’s not really too easy to go to the toilet in public spaces. There are some ways of making this easier, for example, foldable lotas that you can carry and unfold and fill up. And there are some “Islamic housing complexes” in the Toronto/GTA region popping up that have “sprayable lotas” in their designs.

The point I want to make is that, moments like these will make any Muslim want to consider moving out of this country. You can either eat out and then use a public toilet or just not eat all day to avoid going to the toilet.

There is really no way to put it simply: If you can’t possibly take a crap in peace, what makes you think that you can do much more than that with ease?

That’s my cynicism for the weekend.


  1. Hmm.. someone needs to chill!

    I used to leave a plastic water bottle on my office desk for such occurrences. No-one ever asked me about it. I think most people don’t really want to know about the toilet habits of their colleagues!

    Dirty loos are terrible. But that’s a universal problem.

    I don’t have any real issue with using public bathrooms to answer nature’s call. My problem is performing wudhu in the same facility. Especially the part where you remove your shoes and socks. Always gets a stare from the non-Muslims. đŸ˜€

  2. I can bear a stare, but when you really, really gotta go. I mean, that is just, so gosh darn awful! Especially, when you have an exam in like 10 minutes and deal with this stuff…

  3. I have to disagree! There are huge, even bigger problems in bathrooms in Muslim countries.

    over the summer i went to Pakistan, we stopped at Qatar: their bathrooms were disgusting.

    And then when we got to Pakistan, calling it disgusting is too kind.

    -The Muslim Kid-

  4. Yeah, dude I have to agree with themuslimkid, I went for Umrah by bus from Riyadh to Makkah, and on the way we stopped to go to the washroom. And there was literally 200 – 300 people from like 5 or more buses waiting to go to the washroom that was filthy from so much use.

    There were only 2 toilet stalls. And for the women its even worse. And then you think about the elderly and how bad it must be for them. Mind you, this is Saydi Arabia one of the richest countries in the world.

    So in conclusion, if you get to sit down while dialing Number 2, and not have to stare at a gaping hole in the ground – then just hold it, cover the toiletseat with loads of toilet paper, and be glad there isn’t a foreign dude yelling at you in arabic busting down at the door.

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